Microsoft's feeling very pleased with itself. During November it has, it claims, had its best ever European sales month for the Xbox division.
The company tells us, "November 2008 saw the largest Xbox sales ever in the six-year history of the brand in Europe. GfK-ChartTrack data shows that the console outsold PlayStation 3 across the entire region and in particular has seen significant gains in markets like France, Spain and Italy, where it has been outselling PlayStation 3 week after week.
"Xbox 360 has sold more than seven million consoles in Europe since its launch in November 2005 and was the fastest-growing console in Europe for the month of November, with sales up year-over-year 124% versus 43% for Wii and 3% for PlayStation 3."
Great stuff! So, it'll be serving up some November sales figures to back that up, right? Wrong. Not a sausage. You'll also note that, while Microsoft is happy to tell us that its best ever hardware sales month beat Sony's figures, there's no mention of how it did against the Wii. Translate that to, 'the 360 didn't outsell the Wii in its best month.'
The year-on-year growth is without a doubt impressive. If we were Nintendo we'd probably remind you that it's hard sales figures that are the bottom line. You, of course, might then point out that there are no figures to compare...
Still, Microsoft is clearly doing well and seems to be picking up momentum, with factors such as its price cut having played no small part.
Microsoft supported its announcement with a comment from Piers Harding-Rolls, senior games analyst at media research company, Screen Digest. “Even under the current economic conditions European consumers are spending strongly on games as we reach the mass adoption phase of this cycle of consoles", he said. "This Christmas we expect console game sales to outperform last year by a substantial margin, which is a boost for the whole industry. Consumers recognise that games offer a strong value proposition compared to many other forms of entertainment and this is being reflected at the tills.”